back to article Samsung joins Ultrabook race

CES 2012 Week Samsung took the wraps off its entry into the skinny laptop space last night, revealing the 13in and 14in models in its Series 5 Ultrabook 53OU range. Samsung Series 5 Ultrabook 53OU Both machines are based around Intel Core i5-2567M processors running at 1.6GHz and come with 4GB of 1333MHz DDR 3 memory. The …


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  1. mikeyboosh

    Is it me, or do all these ultrabooks look the same?

    1. fattybacon

      Like a Mac Book Air by any chance? Oh but without the higher resolution screen... and if the other Ultrabooks are to go by, for more money.

  2. GettinSadda

    "Both screens have a 1366 x 768 resolution."

    1996 called - they want their screen resolution back!

    1. bluesxman

      Widescreen laptop/monitor in 1996?


      1. GettinSadda

        I didn't specifically mean laptop, and the aspect ratio is not the issue - what I meant was this was the sort of resolution that people thought was adequate back in 1996. Now we use screens with considerably higher resolutions on our desktop machines, yet manufacturers think we can live with such poor screens on laptops. 4 or 5 years ago this would have been a low resolution, but now it is what we are getting on "top-end" machines!

    2. Volker Hett


      For Notebooks, yes, but on my desk I had 1024x768 in 1991.

      With 0ffice 2010 with Ribbons anything less than 900px height is to small. Even with typical websites, Sitting in front of a 1400x1050 display almost 1/3 of this website are black.

    3. ForthIsNotDead Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      I couldn't agree more sir. Which is why I'm still running my 5 year old Toshiba Tecra M5 with XVGA (or whatever it's called) resolution... MUCH better than the rubbish on the market today.

      The only machine I've found so far with a genuine hi-res screen was a Sony Viao (sp?) which cost a bazillion pounds.

      I'll just run my Tosh 'till the wheels fall off...

  3. Ken Hagan Gold badge


    That would be "ultra book" as in "way beyond the size of your average book".

    Seriously, the whole point of a notebook, as distinct from a laptop, was that the former was smaller and therefore more portable. They'll be selling "kindles" with screens that aren't eInk next, or "personal computers" that are so encumbered with DRM that you have no say in their configuration, or "open" systems that are locked down so hard you can't even wipe them and start again with your own OS.

    Icon: grumpy old man.

  4. LomaxFC

    Fanboi alert

    At risk of sounding like a total fanboi: why is it taking so long for Samsung et al to come up with shitter-yet-just-as-expensive competitors to something Apple has been producing since 2008?

  5. Dave 126 Silver badge

    Wouldn't want to go back to 1920 x 1080

    I'm on a Dell laptop with 16:10 1920 x 1200 screen. I wouldn't want to go back to anything lower. It can't be compared to these machines though -it's 17+" and weighs enough to upset chiropractors.

    Plenty of people take digs at Apple, but at least they have screens at 16:10, an aspect ratio that is hard to find amongst other manufacturer's offerings.

    With many applications having Office-style horizontal tool-bars, 'ribbons' or 'command managers' - not to mention browsers- 16:9 makes no sense at all for most people; your actual working area begins to resemble a letterbox.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The 13.3 inch one looks pretty good (assuming the body is aluminium and not fake grey plastic) and the CPU/RAM/SSD/graphics are all up to snuff, but what's with the crap 1366x768 screen resolution? And a dvd writer on the 14 inch model? Seriously? In a device-class who's raison d'etre is to be as lightweight, slim, and power efficient as possible? I can count on one hand the number of dvd's I've had to burn or read in the past 3 years, and that's on my desktop machine. When I'm out and about with a laptop? Pointless. Might as well chuck a 3.5 inch floppy in there too...

  7. The New Turtle

    Interesting range of comments. In '97 I built my first home PC and lashed out 400 quid on a (then larger than average) 17" monitor running 1024 X 768. However I'd agree that now 768 vertical isn't anything like enough - even this Macbook is doing 1280 X 800 and it's over 3 years old. 16X9 simply isn't appropriate for anything other than entertainment, and how many will be buying an ultrabook at a grand + just to watch movies on a small screen?

    But maybe a part of the problem with these devices is that they're simply being mis-marketed. They don't look like ultrabooks, being neither astonishingly slim, nor elegant, and much more like ordinary slimline laptops. If they're priced accordingly then that won't be so bad.

  8. Azzy

    The 90's called - they want their optical drive back

    Why are we talking about optical drives at the same time as new technology?

    Nobody uses optical drives anymore. It's all USB keys, SD cards, external harddrives, and cloud or network storage. Seriously, I've only had to use ONE non-music CD in the past year (and the music CDs I was only putting in to rip, and only because I couldn't find a torrent to download (because that's faster than ripping the CD, and the band doesn't sell the music as a download)). That one CD was Office XP (I hate the ribbon, and OXP still does what I need it to) - and it installs just fine off a network drive anyway.

    I've also burned a few DVDs as backup, which i'll likely never use, since i've got the data backed up on harddrives too...

    Bottom line, while optical drives are something that everyone ought to have one of, it's not something that people need to carry around with them. It's something you use a couple times a month - a bargain basement, desktop size external drive, gathering dust on the shelf most of the time, will do just fine.

    Are people afraid to buy a computer without an optical drive or something? You could seriously just tell people it had one, and most of them wouldn't notice. Or include an external one as an extra option.

    Keep your optical drive, samsung, and give me a decent screen resolution. On windows 7, 768px vertical just isn't enough for... well.... anything other than watching movies or playing fullscreen games. Everything has horizontal bars going across the top and bottom of the window, windows has the task bar, everything has ribbons now, the explorer windows have the folder band (unless you hack it out)... and on top of all that, you have to fit the content you're working on! And all that content uses more vertical space than horizontal - look at El Reg, for example. Not much horizontal space used, but i've got 3 screens full of vertical scrolling to do. Same deal everywhere else - lots of vertical scrolling, and lots of wasted horizontal space (well, it's not totally wasted, because it goes towards fitting tabs on the browser and programs in the task bar, because you can't extend the task bar vertically, because vertical space is at such a premium!).

    Samsung needs to remember what year it is.

    Optical drives don't matter.

    Screen resolution does.

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